SOURCE: Specialty Pharmacy Association of America (SPAARx)

September 24, 2013 09:00 ET

SPAARx Advocacy Prompts Positive Response From HHS on HI-TECH Act Rules

FLORHAM PARK, NJ--(Marketwired - Sep 24, 2013) - The Specialty Pharmacy Association of America (SPAARx), the largest national association representing the broad interests of the specialty pharmacy industry, is pleased to announce that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has positively responded to SPAARx requests for important clarifications to the 2013 regulations under the HIPAA HITECH Act. On July 25th, SPAARx wrote to HHS detailing its position that a number of questions relating to patient adherence and refill reminders under the 2013 regulations were left unresolved. This created conflict with best healthcare practices for compliance and persistency programs developed by specialty pharmacies and their business associates to enhance patient care. HHS' decision to resolve many of these conflicts is applauded by the Association in advance of the original implementation deadline for these 2013 regulations.

In response to the lobbying efforts of SPAARx and other industry organizations over the past months, HHS provided revised guidance on remuneration for refill reminders and other similar communications. The previous HHS guidelines permitted covered entities to be compensated for reasonable direct costs including labor, materials, and supplies. The new guidelines will now also include indirect costs, such as capital and overhead costs. In addition, business associates will now be compensated based on the fair market value for patient adherence and refill reminder services. This clarification will continue to permit patient adherence and refill reminders to properly and positively impact the lives of millions of patients across the continuum of healthcare.

"We are encouraged that the Department of HHS has responded to many of the clarifications that SPAARx and our specialty pharmacy members requested over the past several months. The clarifications they made are improvements to the rules governing the ability of specialty pharmacies to continue to advance the necessary patient-care to achieve positive patient health outcomes," said Kevin Alder, Chief Operating Officer, of SPAARx. Alder added "SPAARx will continue to lobby for additional improvements that are still needed to optimize patient care."

About SPAARx
The Specialty Pharmacy Association of America (SPAARx) is a free-standing, national organization, representing the interests of the specialty pharmacy industry. SPAARx is an industry neutral, mission driven organization that is governed by a board of directors comprised of executives from a diverse group of specialty pharmacies. SPAARx works to set guidelines for the industry and the delivery of the unique services that differentiate specialty pharmacy from traditional pharmacy; advocating for important legislative and regulatory issues that impact all specialty pharmacies nationally, and helping to advance the professional and personal development of those working in specialty pharmacy settings.

Contact Information

  • SPAARx Contact:
    Kevin Alder
    Chief Operating Officer
    Specialty Pharmacy Association of America (SPAARx)
    973.295.3293